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Write an essay discussing why “The Labor Question” was so important during the turn of the century America.

Dear Writer,

The two text books listed below please use as references and site only the pages that are listed:

Written Assignment Instructions

Industrial workplaces changed significantly in the late nineteenth- and early twentieth-century. Many of these changes, and workers’ reactions to them, prompted widespread discussions of “The Labor Question.”

Write an essay discussing why “The Labor Question” was so important during the turn of the century America. Describe the changes that prompted the discussion of this question, and the various ways that people tried to address it.

Your paper must reference its sources and it should be 4 – 6 pages long, if double-spaced and in 12 point font.

Image at right: Industrial buildings, Detroit Publishing Co. , between 1900 and 1915. Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division Washington, D.C. 20540 USA. 3 which takes us from the late 19th century through the Great Depression.

This is a period of tremendous change and development in the U.S. workplace. Modern corporations began to drive much of the structure for the nation’s society and economy as they drew more and more workers to urban centers, and employed them in an increasingly routinized industrial setting. Note that the U.S. had an open immigration policy until 1924, so much of the nation’s new working class in this period came from abroad – – especially from Eastern and Southern Europe. Continue to keep an eye on how developments differed by region in the United States.

You will read chapters 7 to 11 pages 102-188 in Labor in America A History by Dubofsky / Dulles text 8th Edition, as well as pages 67 to 146 of the The Voice of the People by Rees / Pollack document collection. Note that you have a real treat this module – -we are viewing the PBS American Experience video on the Triangle Shirtwaist Fire. Note that this video should be very helpful to you as you gather evidence for this module’s essay, which asks you to offer an interpretation of the Labor Question in early 20th century America. (If you can’t get the video to load, try using a browser other than internet explorer.)

Topic Overview

In this module we will discuss the uniqueness of the South. We will also discuss how modern workplaces – principally corporations – developed in the late nineteenth-century and on into the twentieth-century.

Module Objectives

This module will discuss the following themes:

The emergence of the modern corporation;

The rise of management theory;

Work organization and automation;

The role of women in modern industry;

The ongoing significance of race, and

The southern states in contrast to the north.


Dubofsky and Dulles, chapters 7 to 11.

Rees and Pollack, pages 67 to 146.

Video: PBS American Experience video on Triangle Shirtwaist Fire (53 min.)

Learning Activities

You will be asked to write a 4-6 page paper which discusses “the Labor Question” and what it meant for workers, employers and turn of the century America.


You will be asked to discuss how the South in relation to other areas of the United States. You will also be asked to discuss the emergence of modern corporations, how they were organized, and who worked for them

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